Kale Salad with Lemon Miso Dressing

 

I've been working on book #2, so most of my energy has been going into creating those recipes (can't wait to share what it is!!). I've been trying to use up all my ingredients I have in the fridge, and this has resulted in some interesting combinations. I was craving a kale salad yesterday, and I wanted to use my leftover miso in a dressing. I also had some leftover feta cheese I wanted to finish as well. 

Typically, I think of miso used in Asian cuisine, and feta cheese is clearly Mediterranean. But I thought why not give it a try. Turns out, it tastes totally normal to eat together! I also got a little weirder and threw in some pistachios after I saw a pistachio miso salad online. The ingredients in this salad might sound weird, but I promise you, it tastes really good. Just like a refreshing light kale salad should taste :)

Ingredients (serves 1)

  • 1 pasture-raised egg
  • 3 cups kale leaves (massaged in olive oil and salt)
  • 2 tablespoons pistachio meats
  • 1 tablespoon feta cheese
  • 1/4 avocado, sliced
  • 1 teaspoon sesame seeds

Lemon Miso Dressing

  • 1/2 teaspoon red miso paste
  • Juice of 1 small lemon
  • 1/2 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon honey

1. First, soft-boil the egg. Add egg to a small pot and cover with water. Bring to a boil, and then turn off the heat. Let the egg sit in the hot water for 5 minutes, then remove and place into a bowl of cold water to cool (with the shell still on).

2. Add kale leaves to a bowl (massage with a dash of salt and olive oil). Add pistachios and feta cheese.

3. Make the miso dressing by combining ingredients together in a small bowl and mixing until smooth. Toss the kale, pistachios, and feta in the dressing.

4. Remove the shell from the egg, and cut in half. Add to the salad along with the avocado. Top with sesame seeds.  

Homemade Almond Milk

 

I have always hated milk. I always thought it was so gross, and as a child I made my mom buy me soy milk because I refused to drink milk. As I got older and realized that milk isn't really all that healthy, I felt less guilty about using alternative milks and began to fully embrace them.

Then one day someone told me that store-bought nut milks are often filled with unnecessary ingredients like carrageenan, added sugars, and other weird additives. I was intimidated by the idea of making almond milk at home, so I stuck to making cashew milk, which didn't require any special tools like a cheesecloth or nut milk bag.

Except all this has changed now that I've gotten my hands on some Ellie's Best Nut Milk Bags. First of all, nut milk bags are NOT expensive, and I don't know why I was scared to purchase one in the first place. Second of all, making almond milk IS NOT HARD AT ALL. It's worth the extra prep to have fresh tasting, pure almond milk, and my coffee and smoothies have never tasted better. Plus, you can also make cold brew using these bags, and that's pretty freakin awesome (I've saved so much money on my coffee drinks by making them at home!)

This almond milk can be made super basic, or you can add on my suggested goodies at the end for more flavor. You will need a nut milk bag, BUT you can order one from Ellie's Best and get 10 percent off using my discount code "Carina10." In addition to cold brew and almond milk, you can use these bags for all sorts of different nut milks. Next on my list to try: Hemp Seed Milk.

Ingredients (makes 2 cups)

  • 1 cup raw unsalted almonds
  • 2 cups filtered water

Optional Add-Ins

  • 1/2 teaspoon pure grade B maple syrup
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla

1. Soak the almonds overnight to soften. This step is essential and cannot be skipped!

2. In the morning, add almonds and water to a blender along with any additional add ins you want to use to flavor your nut milk. Pulse a few times, and then blend for about a minute or so until you've reached a smooth consistency.

3. Place out a large bowl, and have your nut milk bag open. Pour the almond liquid into the nut milk bag, letting the almond milk strain out into the bowl. Use your hands to squeeze the pulp that's caught in the nut milk bag to get out the rest of the liquid. Store in a milk bottle or mason jar, and keep in the refrigerator for up to a few days. 

Goat Cheese Mushroom Ravioli

 

I have yet to make pasta by hand, but this homemade ravioli shortcut is one step closer to making my own fresh pasta. I got the idea online to make your own ravioli by using fresh lasagna sheets, and they turned out pretty well! Plus, they're definitely simple enough for even the most basic cook.

What's fun about making your own ravioli is that you get total control over what goes inside, and that means your options are endless. This ravioli contains goat cheese, mushrooms, and Prohibited Provisions Italian Herb Garlic Mix. But you can also experiment and make your own vegan pesto filling, use butternut squash — shove three cheeses in there if you want. Just keep in mind that these ravioli come out on the larger side, so you won't need to eat as many as you think.

Tip: I got my fresh lasagna sheets at Whole Foods!

Ingredients (Serves 2; Makes 8 Ravioli) 

  • 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup chopped white mushrooms
  • 4 tablespoons goat cheese
  • 2 tablespoons Prohibited Provisions Italian Herb Garlic Mix (if you don't have this, add 2 cloves garlic to the pan with the mushrooms instead)
  • 4 fresh lasagna sheets
  • Fresh sliced basil, for garnish

1. Heat up olive oil in a small pan on medium heat. Add mushrooms (and garlic, if you're not using Prohibited Provisions), and sauté the mushrooms until they're soft, about 3-4 minutes.

2. In a medium bowl, combine cooked mushrooms, goat cheese, and garlic mix until smooth.

3. Take each lasagna sheet and run it under warm water for 5 seconds on each side to soften. Lay on a floured surface and cut each sheet in half crosswise (This video can help). 

4. Spoon the mixture evenly into each of the 8 pieces. Fold the ravioli dough in half, and press down with a fork on the sides to seal.

5. Bring a large pot of water to boil, and add the ravioli. Cook until ravioli floats to the top, about 3 minutes or so. Serve with a drizzle of olive oil and chopped basil.  

Spaghetti with Red Chard, Mushrooms, and Leeks

 

Pasta will always have my heart. When I'm not spiralizing, I'm usually nomming on some brown rice spaghetti, lentil penne, or quinoa fusilli. I use pasta as a base, like I would any other grain. This means I use a small portion of pasta and load it up with vegetables and other foods to make it go a long way. This simple noodle dish is made with garlic, leeks, mushrooms, and red chard, and topped off with Parmesan cheese, all tossed together in my non-stick American Kitchen Cookware pan!

To win a pan of your own, feel free to enter my giveaway contest on Instagram here. 

Ingredients (serves 2)

  • 2 servings brown rice spaghetti (4 ounces)
  • 1 tablespoon ghee butter
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 leek, cut into thin slices
  • 2 cups sliced white mushrooms
  • 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 bunch red chard, leaves removed from stems and broken up
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1. Prepare pasta according to package. 

2. While pasta is cooking, heat up ghee butter in a large pan on medium-low heat. Add garlic and leeks, and cook for about 4 minutes. Add in mushrooms, cooking for an additional 3-4 minutes until mushrooms become soft. Transfer mixture into a bowl and set aside.

3. In the same pan, add the olive oil, and let it heat up for a minute or two on medium-low heat. Add chard, and cook for 2-3 minutes until it becomes wilted. Add back in the mushroom mixture along with noodles, and toss with Parmesan cheese. 

Deconstructed Breakfast Burrito Bowl

 

One of my New Year's resolutions was to stop using canned beans and start making dried beans instead. Not only are canned beans filled with salt (and obviously not as fresh), they often contain BPA because of how the cans are lined. BPA is a chemical that acts as an endocrine disruptor, which messes with your hormones. And who wants that?! I finally pulled the trigger and ditched the canned beans thanks to my friend Aza, who gave me a few bags of her favorite heirloom beans from Rancho Gordo. 

Oh my god were they amazing. I'm never going back to canned beans again. I just soaked the black beans overnight and cooked them with some garlic, cumin, and bay leaves, and they were so flavorful and tender and not at all hard to make.

The first item on the menu using these beans: Deconstructed Breakfast Burritos. 

Ingredients (serves 1)

  • 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 cups fresh baby spinach leaves
  • 2 pasture-raised eggs, 
  • 1/2 cup cooked black beans
  • 1/2 avocado, sliced
  • 1 stalk green onion, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon cotija cheese
  • Lime, to taste

1. In a medium pan, heat up olive oil on medium-low heat. Add spinach, and sauté for about 2 minutes or until spinach is wilted. Leave the heat on the pan, but transfer spinach to a bowl.

2. In a small bowl, whip the eggs with a fork to make scrambled eggs. Add them to the pan, letting them sit for 30 seconds, and then use a spatula to scramble them for a minute or two until they are just about soft. Transfer them to the same bowl with the spinach.

3. Add black beans and avocado to the bowl as well. Top with green onion and a sprinkle of cotija cheese and a squeeze of lime to taste.

I love this dish with hot sauce, so I highly reccomend a little drizzle of habanero!